Israeli authorities have accused 17-year-old Amal Nakhleh of throwing stones at soldiers and held him for a year in administrative detention without charge.
Family members of arrested Palestinian teenager Amal Nakhleh have voiced their fears that Israeli authorities could renew their chronically ill son’s detention in a Monday hearing.
Amal’s father and journalist Moammar Nakhleh said he is deeply worried about his son’s health and says he is "bracing for the worst" on Sunday.
"Since his arrest last year, I have only seen him twice, including last week when he told me he wanted to go on hunger strike," Nakhleh said of his 17-year-old son.
"This scares me because he is already very weak," he added.
Amal suffers from myasthenia, a rare neuromuscular disease, and underwent surgery in 2020 to have a tumour removed from his rib cage.
Israeli authorities accuse Amal, whose first name means "hope" in Arabic, of throwing stones at soldiers and have held him for a year in administrative detention.
The practice allows for suspects to be detained without charge for renewable six-month terms while investigations are ongoing.
Arrested, released, re-arrested
Amal's predicament dates back to November 2020 when he was arrested by Israeli authorities in the occupied West Bank.
A football fan, he was out with friends after recovering from his cancer surgery. Accused of throwing stones at soldiers, Amal was held for 40 days but then set free by an Israeli judge.
But in January last year, he was re-arrested and placed in administrative detention, which has since been twice renewed.
The UN refugee agency UNRWA has taken up Amal's case with Israeli authorities.
"We are demanding his immediate release from administrative detention for two reasons: his medical condition which is incredibly serious... and he is a minor," UNRWA's West Bank chief, Gwyn Lewis, tells AFP.
Administrative detention has been criticised by Palestinians, human rights groups and foreign governments, who charge that Israel abuses it.
Israel defends the practice, saying that "due to the complex and volatile security situation in the West Bank, detention orders are issued against those who plan terrorist attacks, or those who orchestrate, facilitate or otherwise actively assist in the commission of such acts".
Earlier this week, leading Israeli newspaper Haaretz published an editorial titled "Enough with administrative detentions".
"It's time for Israel to learn to forgo this undemocratic, corrupt practice of unlimited administrative detention, without evidence or charges that can be refuted," Haaretz said.